The coronavirus, or COVID-19, outbreak has continued spreading worldwide, and Seattle, Washington has been one of the first areas in the United States to be hit heavily by the virus. The city and its surrounding areas house a number of major game developers, including Bungie – and today, the studio has announced a work-from-home policy for its employees.
“While health and safety are our top priority,” Bungie says in its announcement, “we also recognize the importance of maintaining the continuity of our regular Bungie business operations and have rapidly built a remote work infrastructure to best support this. This includes delivering on our current content plans, the maintenance and upkeep of Destiny 2, as well as continuing development of the game.”
The new remote work infrastructure has begun today. Bungie has “rolled out technical solutions for all employees to be able to maintain communication with one another, as well as to continue working on development and maintaining game-critical functions while working remotely.”
Bungie says that “there is a possibility” the changes could disrupt the usual patch schedule, the Season of the Worthy start date is still on track for March 10, as is Trials of Osiris on March 13.
There is no substitute for gathering together with the talented people who make Bungie games, but I am enormously grateful to work for a company that cares so very deeply and sincerely for our health and safety. If you are working from home, share a pic of your current setting… pic.twitter.com/cFbmiTLOlM
— DeeJ (@DeeJ_BNG) March 5, 2020
Other major game studios with offices in the Seattle area include Microsoft, Nintendo, ArenaNet, and Valve. Don’t be surprised to hear similar news on other studios in the days to come – hopefully all these companies are willing to prioritise the safety of their employees regardless of the short-term needs of their development schedules.